Below is a look at what Detroit Lions head coach Jim Caldwell had to say on Friday. (Quotes provided by the Lions.)
On S James Ihedigbo being listed on the injury report and the seriousness of the injury: "We'll see today, he's gotten better. He improved overnight so we'll see what he does today."
On if Ihedigbo suffered the injury to his back in practice: "Sometimes guys wake up with stuff you know it just happens. I don't know when he did it or where in that sense it's just one of those things. I don't know if he slept on it wrong or what might have happened."
On Ihedigbo's impact since returning from injury: "He's one of those guys that just has a great feel and knack for his position. He also has I think the ability to kind of exponentially empower others around him as well. He's a guy that brings a lot of energy to the game and obviously the knowledge helps as well. He's a real strong leader."
On if Ihedigbo missed snaps in Sunday's game because of a lingering injury: "No. That was a different issue."
On the importance of the game against Arizona: "It's just like every week. If you're playing well and playing decently every week those games get bigger and bigger. Obviously this is the biggest one because it's the next one. It's the most important one because it's the next one. I think our guys understand that."
On how important DE Jason Jones has been: "He's been a factor for us all year long. I think that most of the guys will tell you on defense that his versatility, his ability to rush the passer, his ability to stack up the run and set the edge for our defense, and his flexibility in being able to go inside or outside has been extremely important for us. He's one of those guys too, you know, it's nice to be able to have a good group of veterans that are fine players. You talked about Dig a little earlier and Jason obviously is one of those guys as well. His experience is invaluable and what he's able to do with some of our young guys is he sets the tone for them and gives them some direction, which is very important."
On if a determination has been made on WR T.J. Jones: "No but he's getting close. He's getting close to coming back."
On how much more he expects LB Kyle Van Noy to play: "It depends, you know we have certain packages that guys are in and fit into. I expect as time goes on you'll see it increase a little bit more."
On if Van Noy is ready for more playing time: "It's always a gradual process with us as we kind of move guys along. It's not like he's been out there the entire year. There have been guys that have been playing extremely well but he does fit into that system and work within it. We'll gradually move him forward."
On what he has said to his players to keep them focused for a game of this magnitude: "I'm not certain what you mean by game of this magnitude this season, even the first one was like this one, I think. Last week was like this one, it really is. We're not in the third round of the playoffs, so it's a game for us. We're playing an outstanding team and we have to go find a way to win it. That's really it. It's not like you lose this game and your season's done, that's not the way it is. So, we focus in on this one and get after it and find a way to win it against a very tough team."
On what he's done to change the culture of the Lions: "I'm not certain that I'd point anything directly at me, but I can just tell you this team's appetite for winning has changed. I think we had to change their ambitions and that's probably changing the culture. Just what we're shooting for and then not only that, I think the ambitions have probably always been there, but how to go about getting there I think is a little different in that regard. But I do think because of the fact that the timing is such where we have so many guys that have been through some difficult times and having the experiences and the success that they'd like, they've sort of banned together, creating a family atmosphere. Focusing in on the things that are important to winning and trying to find a way to get it done."
On how he goes about changing ambitions: "I think it's reinforcement. I think it's much like anything else that you do, it's just constant work, constant talk about it. The projection of it, what it looks like, what you sense, what practice looks like when you're trying to get to that particular goal, all of those things. How you function in public, what that looks like, you have to set the stage in all of those different areas. How you handle yourself in meeting rooms and just consistently you have to keep reinforcing those things. You have to keep reinforcing those things, you have to keep talking about them to the point where it becomes second nature."
On if he feels he needs to change ambitions: "Every day, every minute. That's the way it is."
On if there is a concern about not getting too full of yourself as a team: "I think it falls in line with what we've been saying all along, never get too high, never too low. We mentioned the other day when I think it was John Wooden was talking about not getting too tied up in criticism, nor praise, and probably the old adage, ‘Flattery is like Flowers.' You can smell them, but you can't eat them. All of those things, we kind of talk about that and reinforce that and I think our guys have bought into that. Once that game is over with, from the one in which they've played, there's nothing we can do about it. We look forward to the next one and see if we can use either our joy or our disappointment as fuel for the next contest."
On if DE Ezekiel Ansah hitting his stride: "I don't think there's any question that he's getting better and better all of the time. You may think that I'm just making idle talk, but he still hasn't scratched the surface yet. He's learning and getting a good feel, getting confident about his repertoire of moves how to handle the run and things of that nature, playing blocks and so on and so forth. When you look at him, he really hasn't played a whole lot of football. So, you would expect that particular statement to be true, he's still developing, and that's kind of frightening. That kind of speed and power, when he gets the experience to match, I think he's going to do exactly what he's capable of doing and that's being outstanding consistently week after week."
On the captains this week: "We have (Julian) Stanford on special teams, Joique Bell on offense and defense (Ndamukong) Suh."
On LB Josh Bynes: "He is a guy that's played some football. He's got experience and not only that but he's a quick study. Systemically, he's somewhat familiar with but nevertheless, he also came at the time when he had an opportunity to get there fairly early. We had a great need but he's also found a home. You see him in and out of there quite a bit."
On the relationship between Ansah and Suh: "I think those relationships are extremely important. I think the whole group gets along incredibly well. If you watch them you'll see that they're a pretty tight group. I think anytime that you can foster a relationship that's strong between one high performer and the other, I think it's a positive. I think Suh's such a great example for those guys in terms of preparation, body, mind and spirit in terms of this game."